Nature Center

The Conservancy Nature Center is closed to the public this week as we prepare for Hurricane Ian.

The von Arx Wildlife Hospital will remain open, weather permitting, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. If you find an injured animal in need of care, please call 239-262-CARE for help from our team of expert wildlife rehabilitators.

The 21-acre Nature Center features a collection of indoor and outdoor exhibits and artifacts curated to showcase Southwest Florida’s unique ecosystem. The experience includes the newly renovated Susan and William Dalton Discovery Center with the new John & Carol Walter Discovery Wing, which features an invasive species and climate change galleries.

The Nature Center is listed as site #69 on the Great Florida Birding Trail and also boasts electric boat tours featuring live flora and fauna along the Gordon River; docent-led visitor programs on topics such as reptiles, birds of prey, oceans, and wildlife injury prevention; and a wildlife exhibit.

Kids Playing Walter


Tuesday - Saturday (Closed Sunday & Monday)

9:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. 




Children (3-12)


See new exhibits and revisit your favorites!

Between the classic Touch Tank and Little Explorer Play Zone to the new Augmented Reality and Science on a Sphere exhibits, the Dalton Discovery Center has something for everyone.

New Discoveries

We've added multiple new exhibits to the Dalton Discovery Center! Be sure to check out the Invasive Species and Climate Change Galleries inside the new John & Carol Walter Discovery Wing.

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Electric Boat Tours

All aboard from the Allyn Family Dock! Take a leisurely, informative, and fun 45-minute cruise along the beautiful Gordon River here in Naples.

Starting July 5, the boats will depart at the top of every hour from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and no reservations are required! Boat tours are included with your Nature Center admission fee.

Fun For the Whole Family

There's something for everyone at the Conservancy Nature Center! The new John & Carol Walter Discovery Wing features interactive educational experiences, like the New Discoveries Lab!

COSWF Lab Girls

Become a member and save!

With a Conservancy membership, you'll earn free admission to the Nature Center for at least 2 adults and 4 children. Click below to learn more about the other perks of Conservancy membership!

Programs funded in part by:

Additional Programs at the Nature Center

Daily Talks

Our Education Team will lead two daily talks on the deck here at the Nature Center! Join us to learn about invasive species here in Southwest Florida and our work with them.

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Invasive Species Talks

11:15 a.m. & 1:15 p.m.

Little Explorers Program Schedule

The Little Explorer Play Zone is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day the Nature Center is open. We also have special programs available on select days. The specific dates are listed below.

Little Explorer Mom and Daughter
Best for kids 18-months to 5-years-old

Bring your little ones to our Little Explorer Play Zone to participate in multi-sensory, interactive activities, stories, and crafts. You will have the opportunity to learn about topics that relate to our mission of protecting Southwest Florida’s water, land, wildlife, and future. Little Explorers will also get to meet ambassador animals and explore the entire Conservancy campus!

Land Animals

August 4: A Color of His Own

Come hear the story of a chameleon in search of his very own color and the special friends he meets along the way! Little Explorers will learn about camouflage and get to create a camouflage craft to take home.


August 11: In the Tall,Tall Grass

Come discover what lives in the seemingly “empty” field! You never know what you might find by using your senses, such as seeing, touching, hearing, and smelling! After that, Little Explorers can become scientists as we explore what can be found in nature around the Conservancy. This program takes place outside the usual playroom, so come join us for a unique experience!


August 18: Oopsie Otter

Come join us in reading about Oopsie Otter and her playful pals! You otter be ready to dance and play, as we will sing silly songs and act just as an otter would while slipping through our rivers!


August 25: Bear Crossings

Come hike our trails through the eyes of a Florida black bear as we move like a bear and search for food. Explorers will also paint bear tracks and compare them to their own! We can bear-ly wait for you to join us!